A frequent accusation in Ynet talkbacks and elsewhere is of “anti-Semitism” – these range from a reaction to my article in favor of women rabbis to Ehud Barak being accused of a “blood libel” against Rabbi Melamed of Har Bracha Yeshiva.This raises the possibility that an anti-Semite nowadays is defined by some people as someone who disagrees with the accuser, a Jew. It is a manifestation of a world view described as the “new anti-Semitism”, the idea that all criticism of Israel is demonization driven by hatred of Jews alone.This idea has gained wide acceptance both in Israel and Diaspora Jewish communities and it very concerning, as it leads to a collapse of dialogue between Jew and fellow Jew (and even more with non-Jews). It also encourages a series of conclusions about the world which are false and damaging.To address the latter point first, it is common nowadays that Israelis and Americans ask me how I can continue to live in the UK which is so deeply anti-Semitic and “anti Israel” (as if the two positions are true and synonymous). This idea of an anti- Jewish conspiracy seems to be spreading, fuelled by false “facts” so that over Passover there was an advert published in the Israeli press which suggested that President Obama had declared “martial law” in the US endangering Jews and Israel (tellingly, this appears to be a loosely based on a far right conspiracy theory about Obama).It should not be necessary to have to say that just because President Obama, or any one else, may disagree with some aspects of Israeli government policy, this does not make him an anti-Semite.I am happy to report that Jewish people live in the UK without significant discrimination and indeed there is often great understanding and awareness of Jewish practices. This is not to say that “old” anti-Semitism has disappeared or that we should be complacent about it.If we are serious about the idea that Israel should be a nation like any other, we should not assume that anyone who disagrees with its government’s actions is in some way criticising the entire Jewish people. When Jewish leaders such as the UK chief rabbi talk of a “tsunami of anti-Semitism” or Israeli ministers such as Yuli Edelstein brand the Goldstone report anti-Semitic they are playing a dangerous game in that this has a potentially corrosive effect on Jewish identity world wide as well as in Israel.The dangers of new anti-Semitism have been identified as conflating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism, defines legitimate criticism of Israel too narrowly and demonization too broadly which trivialises the meaning of anti-Semitism and exploits it in order to silence debate.In addition to these issues, which are significant enough in their own right, I would add that this idea is gaining wide acceptance at a time when we are moving from the “second generation” post-Holocaust to the developing perceptions of the third and fourth generations.eas such as “new anti-Semitism” are in danger of polarising Jewish identity through giving future generations of Jews a very stark choice along the lines of being 100% in agreement with one strand of Jewish thought or having no place in the Jewish world.Through narrowing Jewish self-definition, it is in danger of driving away Jewish youth who maintain liberal values and who may simply choose to walk away and espouse humanist and enlightenment values which they may well be taught are in contradiction to “Jewish values”.
This is not to deny that there is currently a murky dialogue about Jews and Israel, we nevertheless need to try to stand back and make a sober assessment of the situation.
This isn’t easy when emotive subjects are under discussion and when people have such radically different perspectives e.g. regarding to what extent Israel is under an existential threat.
What is required is a sensible debate and a wider discussion of the issues of the parameters of legitimate debate. Rather than adopting simplistic and damaging assumptions that everyone is against us, including committed Jews who disagree with the person defining the anti-Semite , we should instead remember basic ethical principles such as not humiliating people and opposing prejudice and racism wherever we find it, within the Jewish community as much as the world at large. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7...876897,00.html
Commento: gli eurabici che demonizzano l'Inghilterra, potrebbero riflettere e così i pro israeliani acritici e fomentatori di razzismo ecc. ecc.